MICAH’S MOMENTS: Man City’s treble charge has taken on a new twist with FA Cup final against rivals
Oh to be able to pull the boots on once more. The first all-Manchester final for a trophy will be an unbelievable occasion and I can’t say there isn’t just a tiny bit of me that is jealous of the boys who are going to be involved on June 3.
My mind went racing back to April 16, 2011, and the semi-final between City and United after Victor Lindelof converted his side’s crucial penalty against Brighton.
That was the day Manchester started to turn blue thanks to Yaya Toure’s goal.
I’d scored the winner in the quarter-final against Reading but a hamstring tweak meant Roberto Mancini didn’t take any chances with me against United and gave my place to Pablo Zabaleta. I’ve never been so frustrated watching a game in my life.
The emotions will be no less charged in six weeks. City’s Treble bid has suddenly taken on a new twist, but 12 years ago was different and we were ferociously determined to prove we were a coming force.
This time United won’t want to contemplate being beaten as they protect their own history. It will be epic.
In-form Manchester City will take on their rivals Manchester United in the FA Cup final in June
The Red Devils won’t want to contemplate defeat with the legacy of their 1999 treble to protect
My mind went racing back to 2011 where I scored in the quarter-final against Reading only to miss the semi-final against Manchester United with an injury. (Pictured next to David Silva, left)
Newcastle will need FOUR signings
Eddie Howe will not say so, but Newcastle are heading to the Champions League.
Different questions are going to be asked of his squad next season and, to cope with the demands, I think he’s going to need four very good players to keep them competitive.
When you are not used to playing midweek and then get handed a 12.30pm kick-off away on a Saturday, the impact is often huge.
They could do with another left-back to challenge Matt Targett but their centre-backs are quality and I’m a big fan of Dan Burn. It wouldn’t hurt them if they bolstered their midfield and I would say another winger will be an option, with some questions over Allan Saint-Maximin’s future.
The main thing, though, is bringing in characters who will enhance what Howe has got, not just buying for the sake of it.
Newcastle are in a strong place to qualify for the Champions League after beating Tottenham
They will need four signings this summer including a left back that can challenge Matt Targett
The lads, who have got Newcastle to the cusp of this outstanding achievement, absolutely deserve to be there for the next chapter.
All they need is a little helping hand and the progress that has blown everyone away can continue.
Stunned by Salah
It was always Mo Salah’s dream to be a Liverpool legend. I played with him at Fiorentina and when we used to go out for coffee, he talked about his ambition to move to Anfield eventually.
I knew when Liverpool signed him in 2017 they had a superstar in the making, but even I’ve been stunned by the number of goals he has scored.
He needs four more to leapfrog Steven Gerrard (186) and get into the club’s all-time top five. Don’t bet against him doing it by the end of the season.
Mohamed Salah needs just four more goals to move into Liverpool’s top-five scorers of all time
Hopes for Moyes success
I’ve always had huge respect for David Moyes and after West Ham’s 4-0 hammering of Bournemouth, there is little chance of them being relegated. I never believed that was a possibility anyway.
He’s an excellent manager and I’d love to see him lift the Europa Conference League.
Time to move the semi-finals
Much has been made about the number of empty seats at Wembley for Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final between Manchester City and Sheffield United, almost as if it is a sign that some City fans have become complacent about success.
Don’t listen to such nonsense. If people want full houses for the last four, then there should be real consideration to hosting them at neutral grounds. Elland Road would have been perfect, logistically, for those two sets of fans.
There were empty seats at Wembley in Man City’s FA Cup semi-final with Sheffield United
Only a matter of time for Ange
It was interesting to see Ange Postecoglou linked with the Chelsea job.
I spoke to Joe Hart shortly after he joined Celtic in August 2021 and he raved about his new manager, particularly about his character and outlook on life.
He plays brave football and Joe said nothing flusters him. It is only a matter of time before a club here takes a plunge on him.